5 Apr 2004

PNG's Supreme court is to consider whether parliamentary adjournment unconstitutional

7:15 am on 5 April 2004

The Papua New Guinea Supreme Court is to hear the application by the chief ombudsman to declare Parliament's 5 month adjournment in January unconstitutional.

Five judges will hear the case on April 28.

The ombudsman, Ila Geno, has named the National Parliament, the acting Parliament Speaker Jeffrey Nape, the National Executive Council, the Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare and the Attorney General, Francis Damen, as defendants.

Mr Geno's counsel, David Cannings, said the issue raised serious quesions of constitutional interpretation as to whether Parliament and its members have breached the duties imposed by the Constitution to meet for a minimum number of days, with regularity.